Tuesday, December 30, 2014

RTE told to stop jamming pirate radio signals

30 December 2014

Pirate radio stations caused quite the stir in 1984, creating a headache for both the RTÉ and the Government.

Unlicensed, pirate radio stations flourished in Ireland in the early 1980s — providing younger listeners an alternative to the state broadcaster.

Amongst them, were the Dublin stations of Sunshine Radio and Nova — which employed a full roster of presenters.

Jamming signals:
Due to pirate radio stations setting up shop on frequencies with no licence, the Government moved to impose further regulations on them. Meanwhile, RTÉ also attempted to put a stop to stations using illegal frequencies by putting out jamming signals.

There was cause for concern as the frequencies being used and the jamming signals impacted on phone lines, as well as frequencies used by hospitals and airports.

In state files released under the 30 year rule, a letter from Dublin City Council to the Government said they “deplored” the situation with pirate radio stations and was becoming a public safety matter as people could not reach doctors when the phones were out of use.

The Taoiseach at the time, the late Garret Fitzgerald, received a number of letters from members of the public, particularly young people, asking for the Government to intervene and begin granting more broadcasting licences.

Read the full article at: http://www.thejournal.ie/pirate-radio-rte-taoiseach-state-papers-1823552-Dec2014/ 

(via Mike Terry, BDXC-UK Yahoo group)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Interesting piece. There were allegations levelled at the time in the underground press in the UK and in free radio supporting journals which suggested that the BBC provided assistance to RTE in jamming Irish pirate stations. I do not believe however that there was ever any confirmation of this, either at the time, or in papers released under the 30 year rules.